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MANDARIN PLAID (Lydia Chin/Bill Smith series) Kindle Edition

37 customer reviews

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Length: 279 pages Word Wise: Enabled
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Lydia Chin/Bill Smith series

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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Lydia Chin, Rozan's sharp, funny and sexy detective who operates out of New York's Chinatown, is back in action in this lively story about the fashion industry -- from the glamorous designer studios to the sweatshops where illegal immigrants do the dirty work. Lydia knows the sweatshop scene well: her mother worked in one while she was growing up. Now she and her sometimes dangerous partner, Bill Smith, have to find out who will do anything -- including murder -- to keep a young designer from launching her new company. (Previous Lydia Chin books are China Trade and Concourse.)

From Booklist

Private investigators Lydia Chin and Bill Smith enter the world of New York's high-fashion business, hired by aspiring designer Genna Jing when the sketches for her first solo show are stolen and held for a $50,000 ransom. Lydia makes the drop while Bill waits to follow whoever picks up the envelope--only neither one anticipated that Lydia would be shot at and that the money would disappear in the ensuing confusion. Thus begins an extremely convoluted and fast-paced plot that takes Lydia and Bill from Chinatown sweatshops to very "in" clubs frequented by models and drug dealers. Along the way, Lydia struggles with her brothers' habit of treating her as the "little sister" to be protected, her mother's repeated attempts at matchmaking, and her own feelings about Bill and where their relationship is headed. The first installment in this series was impressive; subsequent ones just keep getting better and better. Don't miss this one. Stuart Miller

Product Details

  • File Size: 452 KB
  • Print Length: 279 pages
  • Publication Date: April 14, 2012
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007UJZVVW
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #85,354 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

SJ Rozan was born and raised in the Bronx and is proud of it. She spent over twenty years as an architect in New York City and is kind of proud of that, too. Now she writes and teaches. She's done 10 books in the Lydia Chin/Bill Smith series (the newest, ON THE LINE, comes out Sept. 28, 2010) and two standalones. She's also published three dozen short stories. A collection of her stories, A TALE ABOUT A TIGER, is available, and a second volume is coming.

SJ's work has won the Edgar, Anthony, Shamus, Nero and Macavity Awards, and she's a recipient of the Japanese Maltese Falcon. She's served on the National Boards of Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime. She's a past President of the Private Eye Writers of America. She's been Guest of Honor at Left Coast Crime (El Paso, 2003), Toastmaster at Bouchercon (Indianapolis, 2009), an invited speaker at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland (2003) and as if that weren't enough, she has the key to the city of Fort Worth, Texas.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 29, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book loses a star for a plot that is not quite up to Rozan's usual high standard (but is still not bad). It would be a mistake to pass this one up, though, in spite of the plot flaws. The characters are terrific, as is the dialogue. The ending is very suspenseful. The best thing about this book, however, is the two detectives. After a somewhat shaky start in China Trade, Lydia Chin and Bill Smith have improved to become extremely entertaining. The chemistry between these two could burn a house down. (Rozan has wisely toned down Bill's fawning over Lydia). In sum, very worthwhile.
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 2, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Of the first four Lydia Chin / Bill Smith mysteries, this is the best. Rozan does better in the books narrated by Chin than in those narrated by Smith, and the plot, while not quite believable, is more involving and coherent than in China Trade. Rozan is at her best when describing the life of Chin, living both in the tradtional world of Chinatown and in the contemporary world of Manhattan. It's a good "trash" read for your next beach day or airline flight.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By MSC on April 20, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
S. J. Rozan writes an amazing series, set in New York but with the international flavor that only NYC can serve. Her mysteries are crisp, character driven and entertaining. Mandarin Plaid lives up to all you would expect from this fine author. This is another winner in the Chin-Smith series.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Carol Peterson Hennekens on January 3, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In my recent review of "Concourse," I bemoaned the lack of Lydia in the story. The great news is that Lydia is definately back in place as the protagonist in this book. Bill Smith is still around but only in a supporting role. Why is this important?
First, the mystery itself returns to having Lydia's Chinese ancestry and life in Chinatown play a major plot in the book. Concourse was just another Caucasian mystery in many ways. It also sees the return of the lots of insights on life as a Chinese-American daughter and younger sister. In sum, this book has much of the atmosphere and humor that I enjoyed so much in the first book, "China Trade."
The mystery itself is only so-so. Lydia's hired to deliever a blackmail payment for a clothes designer. The list of possible suspects is pretty short and it wasn't hard to guess the ending. Still, I enjoyed the characters and the setting so much that I didn't really mind.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Marilynne Smith on July 1, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A fun romp with lots of the fashion industry as background. Lydia Chin is asked to make a drop for a kidnap in progress. As soon as she makes the drop, the shooting begins. I liked the story told against Lydia's world: one world that includes a Chinese mother and her friends who are modern Chinese: one world where Lydia is a female PI with all the struggles that implies: and the world she enters to solve the mystery of who took the money and who killed who - the world of designer fashion.

Mandarin Plaid? She eventually tells you, but you have to watch for it.

I recommend it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By DsrtRosy on May 15, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This enjoyable book had everything you want from a PI yarn - multiple story paths that all come together into one, believable and interesting characters, and a clear knowledge of place. Without even trying, the well-written story brought New York's Chinatown to life. Lydia and Bill, the mothers, the family and relational dynamics, and even the glimpse into the fashion industry were pitch perfect. I highly recommend this to any mystery lover and will be adding this author to my list of favorites.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Rebecca L. Silva on March 22, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Enjoyed every page. Liked the development in Lydia's personal life - family and friends were more present. This is a terrific series.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Kelly on January 11, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
For mystery readers and for those who care about the setting, this book is a "can't stop" read. the plot definitely kept me intrigued.
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